TALES OF US UNITES STORYTELLING, ART, EDUCATION AND TECH TO OFFER NEW WAYS OF UNDERSTANDING OUR WORLD.
We believe the cultures and mythologies that shaped our history also open our eyes and minds to the future.
World of Us
The brainchild of a collective of thinkers and researchers from all over the world, this platform acts as an information hub for research and resources on rapidly changing technology. It provides users, guardians and parents especially, access to quality, accessible and reliable research on topics such as Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality, the Future of Learning and Education, Decolonising Education and Intersectional Ecology.
World of Us is created in tandem with WOU GAME: an upcoming digital adventure space where children learn about the world around them through play.
Developed over many years in close collaboration with the people of Mbomo-Congo, this photobook and immersive exhibition is based on Pieter Henket’s photographs about the region’s fables. As a photo show, it has traveled to major museums and galleries over five different continents, including the Barberini Museum Potsdam, Fundatie Museum Zwolle, RijksMuseum Amsterdam, Quai Branly Museum Paris, Fotografiska Stockholm, Kahmann Gallery Rotterdam, Photo Festival Melbourne, Rizolli’s New York City, Planetarium Berlin and more. Since the exhibition’s launch in Brazzaville and Mbomo, the photographs have been seen by over 300,000 people.
As a photo book, the photographs became the best-seller photo book Congo Tales, published by Penguin Random House. The book was photographed by Pieter Henket, curated by brothers Kovo and Steve n’Sondé, edited by August Miabeto and the stories were collected by Anni and Mouendet Ideme.
The Congo Game School
This collaboration with gaming studios and digital labs in both Congos aims to grow local gaming initiatives and offer both children and young adults tools for digital empowerment. Workshops have previously been held in Pointe-Noire, Kinshasa and Brazzaville. In 2022, a game-thinking workshop was also co-hosted with Digital Lumumba Lab in Kinshasa.
Upcoming collaborations include the Bonobo studio – one of Congo-Kinshasa’s first gaming studios – whose video game project Kama promotes the myths and stories of Congo.
Build our World
This community-based workshop programme invites children from cultures with great teachings for the world to help shape the digital landscape. In 2022, a partnership with Afro Games in Rio de Janeiro and Redi School in Berlin enabled 7-12 year olds to explore our interactive and educational World Of Us metaverse, building their own 3D objects and learning how to shape their own digital environment.
An on-going project, Build our World is dedicated to collaborations that tell the stories of people from diverse cultures and, with 3 billion people still lacking digital access worldwide, promotes tech-inclusion for everyone.
Game Jam Romania
A collaboration with the Romanian Games Developers Association (RGDA), this game jam was created from 27 game prototypes based on Romanian tales and myths. Team Huchi, the winning team, based their game on the myth of Marea. This evocative fable, traditionally a hymn sung at funeral rituals, follows the journey of the soul to rest. As it encounters obstacles it must learn to unite with those it feared in life, to stop it from wandering between worlds.
Team Huchi:Paroui Matei, Cauc Andrei, Teodor Ionescu and Oleksandra Puza.
Game Jam Brazil
Games created for this global competition in Brazil, in partnership with GameJam+, were inspired by the title Tales and Seeds: An ethno-botanic journey through tales from Brazil. Applicants from over 65 cities worldwide competed with 49 game prototypes to participate in the next phase of mentoring and incubation, where industry experts help with game development and the TALES team helps with ecological and ancestral storytelling.
25 prototypes are currently going through the second stage of incubation. Finalists to be announced in April 2023.
Thumbs at the ready as gaming expert Rico introduces the TALES team to his favourite games. Enjoy their thrills and spills as they try to stay alive all the while addressing topics including identity, inclusivity and the importance of keeping authentic narratives at the centre of conservation efforts.
Join us for our monthly Twitch show Tales Unlocked – Imagining green futures, marginalised narratives and mythologies in video games.
Akesi and the Congo River
This three-part docu-fiction series uses an evocative blend of animation and green screen to transport children to the enchanted Congo River. Eight year old Akesi and his playful pink gecko guide their magical journey through local mythology, history and ecosystems, whilst exploring the themes of grief, trust and bravery.
Hosted by: Congolese musician Gaz Mawete,, Belgo-Congolese choreographer Jeny Bosenge,former Saturday Night Live cast member Sasheer Zamata and comedian and musician Teddy Teclebrhan.
The Little Fish and the Crocodile
From character ideation to stage design, this multi-award-winning film was created by the children of the Sanza Mobimba School in Mbomo. Over the course of several workshops, they developed the characters, story and design before starring in the film itself. The film was awarded at more than a dozen international film festivals, including winning the Chicago International Children’s Film Festival.
The Little Fish and the Crocodile has also been shown in several museum installations, including Barberini Museum and Museum de Fundatie, featured in a segment on PBS Newshour, and continues to be shared on digital festivals for kids all over the world.